What does normal feel like?

Life had been so full of drama, I didn't really even know what normal was. We had tried counseling once as a family and I didn't understand why I needed counseling.

Paul was the one messed up. I did everything right. My parents needed to be proud of me. We weren't a very vocal family. Not too many "I love you's" heard in my family. Not too many "I'm proud of you's" either.

My mom went to a tough love program for awhile. I'm not totally sure why but she went. I never once heard her ask Paul why he did certain things and I really think it would have been good for him to think about what he was doing. But I really don't hold my mom responsible for everything that had transpired. I totally think that it made a big difference that he didn't have a father figure.

Chris saw my dad as a sperm donor and nothing more. I was a little girl and I desperately wanted a relationship with my dad. Sadly when I did see my dad it consisted of watching television with him and it was always the shows he wanted to watch. Yippee! Now doesn't that sound fun?! When no one else was home I did that but if Ellen, my dad's girlfriend at the time now wife, was home I would visit with her. I also really appreciated talking to her daughters. They represented a real family to me.

When I was younger, a friend and I talked about running away but I always knew that school was important. I never once thought that living on social assistance was the way to live. It really sucked actually but we got by.

My mom was great at giving us opportunities to go places even though she couldn't take us. The YMCA had trips on professional development days so we could go to places in Toronto like Canada's Wonderland, and Ontario Place. My mom didn't drive so she was happy to send us on these outings.

My mom was great at taking us roller skating, ice skating, the circus and we regularly went to the Ice Capades. I knew that I was loved and I think she did an amazing job despite her own health issues.

High school was an awful time of really not feeling accepted and I think at times I was depressed. My mom always allowed us to do what we chose to do and never held us back. The hands off approach was excellent in the long run but sometimes when things are really open-ended, it is nice to have some kind of guidance. We were free to be whomever we chose to be.

No word from Paul or about Paul. Where did he go? Did something happen to him?